HYDERABAD: The death of a Mehran University of Engineering and Technology student in the Hyderabad Central Jail two days after he was imprisoned has elicited allegations of torture against the prison staff.
The deceased's family is also pointing fingers at Hyderabad police, who arrested him a day before he was sent to jail on judicial remand. Tauqeer Ahmed Mashori, 25, and his friends, Saif Ali and Suhail Mari, were charged with possessing and drinking liquor after being arrested from Baban Shah Colony by the GOR police on June 26.
Following the family's accusations, the Sindh IG ordered prisons DIG Muzaffar Alam Siddiqui to carry out an inquiry into the incident. However, the inquiry absolved the prison staff of torturing the prisoner. "Mashori complained of breathing problems on Monday. He was shifted to the Civil hospital for medical treatment but died there," said Siddiqui.
The DIG claimed that he personally went to the prison barracks where Mashori was kept, asking the other inmates about the alleged torture. According to him, none of the prisoners complained about it. Siddiqui acknowledged that the deceased had been sent on remand in a police case in which he could easily have obtained bail.
Mashori's relatives, however, claimed that the district and jail police both demanded bribes, first to avoid charging him in the case and then to keep him safe in jail. "A jail police official, who introduced himself as Mehboob, called us and demanded Rs50,000," alleged Tariq Siyal, a cousin of the deceased.
Meanwhile, Zamir Siyal, another relative, told The Express Tribune that the family is considering taking the matter to the courts.
Mashori, the eldest in his family, was the father of a three-month-old child. His body was taken to Khairpur for burial rites.
The Sindh Peoples Students Federation (SPSF) held protests against the incident in Hyderabad and Matiari districts. During a press conference on Monday, SPSF Hyderabad chapter leader Ghazi Shabir Palari accused the police of killing Mashori, who he claimed was an active member of the organisation.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 2nd, 2015.